Hyderabad: Transport department has hired around 160 vehicles, which are being used by officials and transport department. But, the department is yet to clear the bills and the payment is pending for 14 months now.

Many drivers are from low economic background and have taken loan to buy their vehicle. With this non-payment, they are being subjected to penalties.

As reported by Deccan Chronicle, one of the drivers from the Four Wheelers Association Shaik Salauddin said, “Most commercial drivers come from poor financial backgrounds. We avail loans to buy our vehicles. So when we’re not paid on time, we end up in debt.”

Out of 25,000 vehicles hired in the state of Telangana by various departments, 161 of them is hired by the transport department alone. But because of no relevant budget over the past year, the pending vehicle rental bills allegedly have not been processed.

Annual vehicle cost averages around Rs 6.5 crore as each vehicle is costing Rs 33,000 per month on average, and the total monthly expenditure incurred by the state is Rs 53,13,000.

According to transport officials, the state government has released only Rs 5 lakh towards the payment of pending bills and the rest can be cleared only when they receive budget from the government.